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You can now renew your passport online — but you’ll have to hurry

The hassle of renewing a passport may soon become a thing of the past.

Starting Wednesday, passport renewals can be done online instead of by mail.

The online update, which the State Department first tested in 2022 and took offline in 2023, is available to the public but is currently in beta mode.

Not everyone can join the beta program. U.S. Department of State

The pilot program will allow authorities to “monitor system performance in real time” and make changes to the process in response to evaluations and user feedback. According to the US State Department.

Additionally, users may not be able to start applying as soon as they would like: the renewal system opens for a limited time each day around 1pm EST, with only a few spots open per day and closing once the daily limit is reached.

But updating online doesn’t necessarily guarantee a faster update: Officials said these updates are not yet eligible for expedited processing and will take roughly the same processing time as if they were submitted by mail.

But not everyone can join the beta program.

Hand holding american passport at the airport.
Operating the program in trial mode will allow officials to “monitor system performance in real time.” kieferpix – stock.adobe.com

To renew online, The following requirements::

  • Applicants must be 25 years of age or older and a resident of the United States
  • Applicants must already hold a passport that is valid for 10 years.
  • The passport you are renewing must have been issued between 2009 and 2015, or be more than 9 years old but less than 15 years old from the date you plan to submit your application.
  • Travelers who update online cannot update personal information such as name, gender, date of birth, or place of birth.
  • Applicants will not be able to travel internationally for at least eight weeks from the date of application submission.
  • Applicants must renew a regular (tourist) passport. Special issue (diplomatic, official, service) passports cannot be renewed online.
  • Please make sure you have the passport you are renewing with you – it should be undamaged, unstained and not previously reported lost or stolen.
  • Users should be able to pay for a passport using a credit or debit card and be able to upload a digital passport photo.

“This beta release, which has limited day-to-day application, is an important and standard part of our software development process,” the State Department wrote on its website.

“Please be patient as we complete system testing and prepare the updated online passport renewal system for full implementation.”